A method for enriching microorganisms with high poly(3-hydroxy)butyrate (PHB) production in non-sterile mixed culture conditions.

About

Summary:

Researchers in Dr. Craig Criddle’s lab have developed a method for enriching microorganisms with high poly(3-hydroxy)butyrate (PHB) production in non-sterile mixed culture conditions. PHB is a carbon storage polymer produced by a wide variety of microorganisms and is useful as a commercial thermoplastic. As environmental concerns increase over the production and disposal of petrochemical-based plastic, there is a growing incentive to produce inexpensive alternatives. PHB may provide such an alternative as it is renewable, rapidly biodegradable and non-toxic. However, conventional processes to produce PHB require pure cultures and costly sterilization procedures and thus are not attractive for large scale production. To overcome these limitations, the inventors have developed a method that reliably selects for PHB producing microorganisms from diverse cultures under non-sterile operational conditions over extended time periods.

 

Applications:


Bioplastic- alternative to petrochemical-based plastic


 

Advantages:


No sterilization requirements
Enables adaptation
Permits use of mixed substrates
Does not limit growth rates or selectivity of PHB producing microorganisms
Low cost
Well suited for continuous processes and large scale production


 

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